Honesty is the best policy.

Summer research is over.  My data has been collected.  And now begins the stage called analysis.

Analysis is great and horrible.

You learn how to utilize new tools and visualize information differently.

GREAT.

You find out that your results are not statistically significant.

HORRIBLE. [not saying this happened to me, just in general this is a potential reality]

 

There always exists the possibility that the experimental design was more suited to asking a different question.  There also always exists the possibility that playing with statistics produces inaccurate significance on your findings.

 

This is where we get into the territory of SCIENTIFIC ETHICS.

 

I’m discovering for myself what it means to have significant findings and how statistics can mislead.  I’ve been taught how to read scientific papers and find statistical and graphical manipulation, to see it for what it is.  But nothing could teach me that more than playing with my own data.

 

When you, researcher friend, are in a position to analyze your own data, try to know the line between academic dishonesty and a novel approach to analysis.

 

 

Comments

  1. Nathaniel says:

    Great concluding post on scientific integrity. Good luck in your future science endeavors if you still have the heart for them.